Countertop clutter: Water bottles don't clean themselves

·2 min read

I decided to run a little experiment at home that is probably my own, good fault.

In my attempt to help the environment every little bit that I can, I have drilled into the minds of our children just how bad single use plastic is and rarely, if ever, will you find a disposable bottle of water in our home.

But being voracious water drinkers, you will find instead many, many reusable water bottles of every color, shape, and size. Most of the time there are at least a few sitting on the counter next to the sink, which brings me back to the experiment.

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Putting the water bottle fairy to the test: Failure

I wondered, how long can my children let these water bottles sit here, waiting for the water bottle fairy to fly in during the dark of night and wash them, dry them, and put them away?

I snapped a photo on my phone and dated it. From the time of that photo to the time of this writing, 10 DAYS have passed and still they sit. And they’ve multiplied. We’re currently clocking in at seven of them.

In the days that have passed, I’ve had a lot of time to think about those (mostly) empty vessels, as I push them around to manage other kitchen duties.

I’ve also had time to come up with a poem to honor this situation and will probably print it out and tape on multiple surfaces in our kitchen. Will they read it? I’ll give it a 50% chance.

Poetry to their ears

From the day you were born and thrust in my arms,

You amaze me with all of your talents and charms.

You’re wonderful kids who give wonderful hugs,

But I will not wash out your water jugs.

I will feed you your breakfasts, I will feed you your lunches,

I will help you with last minute school project crunches.

I will take you to practice, I will drive at full throttles,

But I will not wash out your water bottles.

I will kiss all your boo-boos, I will give you dollars,

I will embrace you through tears and take all the hollers,

I will assign you hard chores and helps with the tasks,

But I will not clean out your Hydroflasks.

I will help you with your laundry, all washed and dried,

I will watch you play sports sitting in the rain outside,

I loved you as toddlers as I loved you as teens,

But I will not wash out your water canteens.

And so they will pile, they will stack to the sky,

They’ll overtake the kitchen, gravity to defy,

I love you my son and I love you my daughters,

But this mom will never again wash your bottles of waters.

Reach Karrie McAllister at

This article originally appeared on The Daily Record: Dirt Don't Hurt: This water bottle fairy refuses to clean